Queenslanders can count on the resources industry to continue to strictly comply with all government protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the community, the Queensland Resources Council (QRC) said today.
QRC Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane said the industry was working closely with the State Government and office of the Chief Health Officer (CHO) to prevent the spread of the virus, especially into regional areas, and will do whatever is necessary to protect workers and the community.
“From Saturday, interstate FIFO workers from New South Wales and the ACT either need to be based in Queensland, or they will not be allowed to work here until restrictions are lifted,” Mr Macfarlane said.
“The only exception is if there is a potential safety incident, serious failure of equipment or a critical maintenance issue on a site.
“The latest protocols allow for a small number of highly skilled safety personnel and specialist maintenance workers to enter Queensland on a case-by-case basis as assessed by the CHO Dr Jeannette Young, but only under extremely strict conditions,” he said.
“The resources industry has been preparing for the possibility of more border closures for months, so bringing in specialist workers from interstate will only be necessary in the event of an unforeseen or unavoidable incident.”
He said the QRC will continue to work closely with the State Government to prioritise the health and security of the community and the economy, and to support the 372,000 people who currently work in the resources sector.
“To give people an idea of just how critical the resources industry is to Queensland, total state exports for the 12 months to June was $77.4 billion,” Mr Macfarlane said.
“Mining and energy exports contributed a massive or $63 billion, or 81 per cent, to that figure.
“It’s crucial the industry is able to continue to operate and maintain jobs, support local businesses and underpin the Queensland economy,” he said.
“For everyone’s sake, we need to continue to work together to keep the mining and energy sector healthy and fully operational, to help Queensland recover financially from COVID-19.”